B-Sens enter Christmas break on winning note

Cole Schneider scored 68 seconds into overtime to send the Binghamton Senators into their Christmas break with a 3-2 win over the Albany Devils on Saturday night.

BINGHAMTON, N.Y. — Cole Schneider scored 68 seconds into overtime to send the Binghamton Senators into their Christmas break with a 3-2 win over the Albany Devils on Saturday night.

Mike Hoffman had a goal and an assist, and Mark Stone extended his goal-scoring streak to three games as Binghamton won for the second straight night after snapping a season-worst seven-game losing streak.

“Our work ethic prevailed,” said B-Sens head coach Luke Richardson. “We gave up that (tying) goal in the third … and that could crumble a lot of teams. It showed character that we prevailed at the end.”

“It was disappointing not to win in regulation,” Stone added. “But we found a way to get two points.”

Andrew Hammond made 29 saves to snap his own five-game skid, which included three shootout losses. Nathan Lawson was in goal when Binghamton beat the Syracuse Crunch 5-2 on Friday.

“He was really sharp,” Richardson said of Hammond. “He made some really great saves, and had really good control on rebounds. It was really nice for both goaltenders to get on the winning side these past two games.”

Schneider pounced on André Petersson’s rebound early in the OT period to secure the victory, the B-Sens’ 15th of the season.

“I picked a guy’s pocket, made a nice pass to Petey, then he shot and I buried the rebound,” Schneider said. “We’ve been struggling of late, and after (Friday’s) win, we wanted to get another one. We got off to a pretty good start and got the lead and gave it back, but we kept working hard and came away with the win.”

Stone got the scoring started 3:22 into the first period when he deflected a spin-o-rama pass from Hoffman past Albany goaltender Keith Kinkaid.

“I was going to try to beat him wide,” Hoffman said. “If I could have taken it to the net, I would have. But he was there, and I had just turned up and seen Stone was in the slot … so I just sent one there, and Stone had a good redirection.”

“It was kind of a lucky play, to be honest,” Stone added. “I just drove the net, Hoff just threw the puck at my stick, and (it was a) nice tip.”

Hoffman potted his team-leading 14th goal on a power play 8:48 into the second period, sending a backdoor feed from Stéphane Da Costa into a wide-open net.

“Da Costa found me cross seam on the power play” Hoffman said. “There was no chance for the goalie. It was a nice pass.”

Defenceman Chris Wideman earned the second assist on Hoffman’s goal, moving him ahead of the recalled Cody Ceci as Binghamton’s leading scorer from the blue line with 18 points.

Harri Pesonen scored twice for Albany, tying the game 1-1 early in the second period and 2-2 midway through the third.

B-Sens forward Shane Prince left during the first period after suffering an upper-body injury and was held out of the rest of the game as a precaution. Richardson expects Prince and Wacey Hamilton, who sat out with a minor injury, to be available when Binghamton returns to action, hosting the Hershey Bears on Thursday.

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